To start 2017 we sat down with Claire Bradley, our Patient & Family Support Manager and chatted about her work, the Wellbeing Centre and how complementary therapy benefits cancer patients.
Q. Hi Claire, thanks for chatting to us today. Can you tell us how long have you been working for Beatson Cancer Charity?
I have worked at the Beatson for over 8 years, first of all with Friends of the Beatson and since February 2014 with Beatson Cancer Charity.
Q. How would you describe what you do?
As Patient and Family Support Manager my role is to ensure that a range of services are delivered within The Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre and the associated satellite locations. Currently services are available in Lanarkshire Beatson, Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, Clinic P at the New Victoria, the Daycase Unit and various wards within the Royal Alexandra Hospital and the Vale of Leven. I am a fully qualified Complementary Therapist and try to combine my management role with continuing to deliver therapies to patients and their families too.
Q. Could you tell us about some of the services are offered at the Wellbeing Centre?
In the Wellbeing Centre we provide a range of services including emotional and practical support from our experienced wellbeing assistants and our therapists provide a variety of complementary and beauty therapies, podiatry, hairdressing and wig fitting and supply. We also provide a tea trolley service to outpatients and clinic areas twice a day and clothing packs for inpatients who require clean clothes.
One of the most important forms of support we offer is anxiety management, helping patients and families cope with the challenges of cancer and its treatment.
Q. What do you enjoy most about working for the Charity?
I love my job and feel it’s a real privilege to work here, I love that I get to meet new people every day and can help to support them through a very difficult time. I also really appreciate the assistance I get from my colleagues and our volunteers, we have a great team in patient and family support and as well as supporting patients and families we help each other through challenges too.
Q. How do you think the team make an impact during the patient’s treatment and journey?
The impact Patient & Family Support has is very significant and can really change a patient’s overall stay in hospital allowing them time to relax and unwind in a nonclinical environment. Patients can be far from home, scared, overwhelmed and feeling isolated and we have the time to spend with them to help them come to terms with what is going on, provide a distraction from their treatment and let them benefit from a therapy to help them relax. We often see a positive change in patients once they start using our services. The Patient & Family Support team are very caring and compassionate and our aim is to provide a warm welcome and help to everyone that comes to us for support.
Q. What makes The Beatson special in your view?
What makes The Beatson special in my view is the world class medical care that is provided, the hospital itself is modern and well maintained.
Q. What would you say to someone to encourage them to support Beatson Cancer Charity?
What I would say to encourage supporters is – Beatson Cancer Charity spends the money raised on providing direct support to help patients and families. We are constantly pushing boundaries and looking for new innovative ways to support. Over the past 8 years that I have been in the team we have increased the number of people we help dramatically. We strive to continue to support patients and families and with your help this is possible.
It truly is amazing to have staff such as Claire part of our team who go above and beyond to further help patients and their families facing cancer. To support the work we do at the Beatson, please find out more on how you can support the Beatson Cancer Charity below.
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